Sharp saddle screw / string unwinding

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by EsquireBoy, Mar 21, 2020.

  1. EsquireBoy

    EsquireBoy Tele-Afflicted

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    I put a new fresh set of Thomastik flatwounds last week, and when I was playing today, the G string got unwound at the saddle break angle:

    upload_2020-3-21_17-50-9.jpeg
    Now it’s completely dead sounding obviously, and I’m upset since:
    1. It’s 25$ a set and it usually last me four to six months.
    2. I’m stuck home, probably for weeks, and I have no spare.

    Anyway, I’ll try and order a set online, hoping it will get to me nonetheless.

    But I’m afraid it will happen again if I do not eliminate the cause.
    First I suspected the height adjustment screw, but it’s actually not really protruding above the saddle.
    Now I’m suspecting the side of the hole which is quite sharp.

    I always end up with several strings going over the screw hole. I had fixed that issue by using threaded saddles, but they were compensated for a plain G, and since I went back to a wound G, I’ve had to go back to the stock saddles.

    What would be your thought or advice about that?
    Is there a trick here? Or should I order non compensated threaded saddles?
    Thanks!
    Cheers
     
  2. schmee

    schmee Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    Flatwounds can be a bit fragile. I would probably look at the saddles and deburr the groove edges with maybe ..400 grit wet/dry paper.
    The easy way to do this is to disassemble them, chuck one end in a drill press and wet/wd40 sand the groove as it rotates. They will come out perfect this way, but yeah, it's a lot of messing around.
    Also make sure that the interface between the threaded stud hole and the groove doesn't have a burr.
    The D string on yours looks suspect also. Those barrel threaded holes are crudely countersunk, with "chatter" marks, done with a drill bit.
    I would think a good set of saddles would have better finish work.
    Also, the tight bend where your strings go through the bridge hole into the body looks like it will kill flatwounds also. I would deburr that heavily. That bad I would run a drill through there then deburr:
    [​IMG]
     
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  3. Tenderfoot

    Tenderfoot Tele-Holic

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  4. EsquireBoy

    EsquireBoy Tele-Afflicted

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    Thank you @schmee for all your advice. Truth is, I’m stuck into a country house for weeks, where I have no tools whatsoever, even sanding paper...
    Believe it or not, these are the stock saddles that came with my Custom Shop Esquire, and I agree, they are quite crude. That’s the reason why I had ordered a set of Glendale saddles which were so much neater.
     
  5. EsquireBoy

    EsquireBoy Tele-Afflicted

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    Thanks, I followed the thread where they were discussed, but they all seem to be compensated.

    Glendale have a compensated set for a wound G and since I was very happy with the set I got from them, I think I would go this way.
    But I’m really not feeling comfortable to order overseas right now, since i’m not sure it will get to me.
     
  6. jimmyjoe

    jimmyjoe TDPRI Member

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    in the absence of sandpaper or a nailfile you may be able to fix this using a whetstone
     
  7. EsquireBoy

    EsquireBoy Tele-Afflicted

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    Good idea, thanks for the tip!
     
  8. eallen

    eallen Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    Your strings being over and against the screw hole is not a preferred situation to me. A small groove filed in the saddle for each string will keep then from creeping.

    Eric
     
  9. boris bubbanov

    boris bubbanov Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    I agree with Eric.

    Look at your D string - it is in jeopardy right now.

    In the future you may want to substitute a larger gauge G string - the flat, wound Gs that small are IMO just too fragile. That's 50% of the reason I quit using flats. I always lost my wound G first, and those guys from Ernie Ball would taunt me by including spare B and Little E strings in their packaged sets. I got to the point where I was scrounging takeoff Gs from the other guitarist in the band (who played rounds, plain Gs sometimes).
     
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  10. AndyPanda

    AndyPanda Tele-Holic

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    You can contact TI and have them send you a replacement G string - they've been very good about it for me in the past.
     
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  11. EsquireBoy

    EsquireBoy Tele-Afflicted

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    I’ve managed to order two sets that i’ve just received this afternoon, so I’ll have what I need for the weeks to come at home.
    I’ve also ordered a set of basic Fender threaded saddles: the Glendale groovy 60s I had did solve the issue, but they were just not compensated the right way anymore now that i’ve gone back to flats with the wound G. I think these saddles will solve my issue the same way the Gendale did.
     
  12. EsquireBoy

    EsquireBoy Tele-Afflicted

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    I’ve used the exact same strings on several guitars for many years, and have never broken any string. I think the problem really comes from the stock saddles, which I had already replaced for this exact reason. Now that I’ve ordered new (non compensated this time) threaded saddles, I hope everything is ok again because the strings won’t slip against the screw.
    Will keep you posted when I have had the time to put them in and do a proper setup.
     
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  13. boris bubbanov

    boris bubbanov Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    I hear you.

    Those hard steel, smooth, small diameter barrels are the most liable to let a string get itself into trouble. It is a reason I've gotten away from this sort of saddle. The only thing I have in use right now in that diameter, is Bronze. Yeah, I know. Bronze is cool - it just gets so black with filth; I don't think it will ever become popular. But I don't break strings using it.
     
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